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Delme Roundabout

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Delme Roundabout
Location Map ( geo)
Delme east side.jpg
The eastern side of the roundabout. The damaged arches can be seen.
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Location
Fareham, Hampshire
County
Hampshire
Highway Authority
Hampshire
Junction Type
Roundabout with flyover
Roads Joined
A27, A32
Junctions related to the A32
The odd signs for the junction

The biggest junction in Fareham, where the southern bypass crosses the eastern bypass to get traffic towards the M27. It is built upon the River Wallington, with an 1850s railway viaduct also dissecting the junction.

Due to the gradients and space involved, the north-facing sliproads are much longer and gentler than the south-facing ones.

Despite the presence of the flyover, the preferred route to the town centre was (and still is) to leave here and use Wallington Way. The flyover carries traffic heading to Gosport and west Fareham.

Routes

Route To Notes

(M27)

The West, Southampton, Brighton, Portsmouth Spur of the A27, signed as '(M27)'

A27

Portchester

A27

Titchfield, Gosport, Lee-on-the-Solent, Stubbington, Newgate Lane industrial parks (A32)

A32

Alton, Wickham, industrial parks
Wallington Village Wallington Shore Road
East Street

History

In the Beginning

The original layout of the junction: Pinks Hill was a later addition

The southern half of the roundabout used to be the route of East Street (old A27), which met Shore Road (now Wallington Shore Road) and Cams Hill (also the old A27) at a wide junction just north-east of the present junction, where there is now a bend in the two roads. Pinks Hill and the entrance to Cams Hall also joined here, with the latter now getting a signal-controlled exit on the A27.

There is a local story that a small plane once collided with the railway viaduct, damaging two arches. These were then replaced by one larger arch, aligned to suit what was then the A27, with a smaller, bricked-up arch filling the remaining gap. It's not clear how true this is.

Motorway Era

Fareham's southern bypass was built in 1971, as part of the M27 project. The new junction interrupted the previous ones, with Wallington Shore Road broken in two, Pinks Hill meeting the sliproad to the new Eastern Way, and East Street meeting the roundabout on the other side. Deanes Park Road was cut off by the new A27 at its western end, so instead it was plugged into the junction at its eastern end.

The M27 link road was added in 1976, but the flyover wasn't built until 1985. Space was left for it to be built. Signage around the junction implied that the M27 started here, but it never did and chopsticks were never used.

In 1981 the A32 Wallington Way (eastern bypass) was built and plugged into the junction. With no plans for a new road to Gosport, it was eventually decided to build the flyover. The flyover is 140 metres long, with three spans. An official ceremony was held on 14 June 1985.

Photos suggest that the eastern side of the roundabout (the tightest end) is not on its original alignment: the two cul-de-sacs can be seen in use in some early pictures.

Problems

Pedestrians

Although the junction separates the town centre, a residential area and a secondary school, pedestrians are expected to cross the various dual carriageways and sliproads with little assistance. After a serious accident the council agreed to improve one of the entry slips at a cost of £150,000, but this later turned out to consist of four bollards and a new road sign.

A year later the council did replace this with pedestrian signals, at the same time reducing the sliproad to a single lane and upgrading the signals on the exit slip to include pedestrian facilities, despite fears this would exasperate congestion. They said they wouldn't do this to the sliproads on the other side as the angle of approaching traffic would make it more dangerous. Lots of hatching has been added to try and improve this, but there is still a problem with traffic crossing the hatching and changing lanes at the last minute (see layout).

Congestion

Most evenings traffic from the A32 Gosport Road stretches back onto the flyover. On busy days, this will also stretch down the sliproad, across the roundabout and back up the other side. The A27 also gets very busy trying to join the road, often resulting in tailbacks. It's thought a set of traffic lights prior to the junction have been adjusted to reduce the amount of traffic joining the junction at once.

Layout

Unlike most junctions of this size, there is no spiralling system in place. Instead, traffic heading between the A27 westbound and the M27 has to move over half way round, exactly as traffic from the A32 joins, causing confusion and near-misses. The signage and markings don't warn of this, instead hatching was added prior to the M27 exit to get traffic to get in lane sooner. However, this is of no use to people who aren't familiar with the junction, who instead have to cut across the markings.

This lane arrangement pre-dates both the M27 and Wallington Way, which is probably why it doesn't work well today. It could be solved by having a lane drop at the A32 exit.

Road Users

The size of junction and variety involved means that at night it can be a popular place with local 'boy racers'. In 2008 a speeding vehicle fell from the roundabout into the river.

When the junction is busy, traffic heading from the motorway use the lane for the A27 east (which is often clear), and then cut across at the last minute. For no clear reason, many vehicles also try to access the A32 from lane two.

Strip Maps



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Delme Roundabout
Related Pictures
View gallery (7)
Delme east side.jpgDelme Roundabout north.jpgDelme Roundabout west.jpgDelme Roundabout postcard.jpgA27 Delme Roundabout 1985 signs.jpg
A27
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